Some of our current projects:
Collaborative Project with UNA-UK
The UN Association of the UK (UNA-UK) is the UK’s leading independent policy authority on the UN and a grassroots membership organization with a network of supporters across the UK. Through education and advocacy, it seeks to promote a strong, credible and effective United Nations. UNA-UK members receive the Association’s magazine, New World, and have opportunities to participate in local and national campaigns and events.
BAFUNCS maintains close relations with UNA-UK. At present about 25% of BAFUNCS members are also members of UNA-UK. UNA-UK would like to significantly increase that percentage, and is also keen to tap into the expertise of BAFUNCS members, particularly those who have recently left UN employment and would be willing to speak to a local UNA branch, or to provide advice or mentoring to a young person who aspires to a career with a UN agency or programme.
A collaborative programme between UNA-UK and BAFUNCS on talking to University students about UN careers started in the last half of 2015 with the development of a model programme involving the London School of Economics (LSE) Student Union UN Society.
This experimental programme, which has just completed its second successful year aims to bring the life-long experience of BAFUNCS members to young people interested in careers in the UN and in the international development field in general.
It has involved a variety of activities including informal lunch time discussions with small groups of students, more formal evening panels, and structured workshops where BAFUNCS members set a development problem for teams of students and help to judge the winners. Over the 2 year period, ten BAFUNCS members from the London, Surrey, Kent/Sussex, and Overseas Regions have participated with very positive feedback from all concerned.
Two documents relating to this programme are:
- An article prepared by one of our presenters, The former UK/UNA Volunteer Programme – a breeding ground for international careers in the UN
- Guide to Careers in the United Nations system (derived from information in the Careers Portal of the UNA-UK) which contains a wealth of information useful for anyone contemplating an international career with the UN.
With the programme at LSE about to enter its third year, there is a need for more volunteers from BAFUNCS members within reach of central London. Interest has been expressed by The University of Kent’s UN Society in replicating the model there and three members of the Kent/Sussex Region of BAFUNCS have already offered their assistance to enable this to go ahead during the 2017/2018 academic year.
Additional members are required to participate in the Kent programme and we are also looking for volunteers from the BAFUNCS membership to make it possible to repeat this successful experiment in Universities in other regions. The emphasis is very much on talking about your own careers and experience and what it is like to work for the UN either in the field or at HQ…and does not require a knowledge of up-to-date UN topics and events.
If you are interested in sharing your experiences with the next generation, then please get in touch with Marilyn Carr
Members of BAFUNCS who are interested in joining UNA-UK, or finding out more about other ways to support its work, should contact UNA-UK’s Membership Officer, Richard Nelmes at firstname.lastname@example.org or tel: 020 7766 3456
League of Nations Centenary
To mark the centenary of the creation of the League of Nations, BAFUNCS has assembled a four-person team that is researching and drafting a book on its first Secretary-General, Sir Eric Drummond, and his senior colleagues and the legacy that the League left behind. This book will show how the early League acquired a high reputation, an achievement that was largely due to officials that Drummond appointed and who, in office, showed courage and imagination – and above all impartiality. The publication of the book will be timed to broadly coincide with the centenary in either late 2018 or 2019.
The United Nations Career Records Project
The United Nations Career Records Project (UNCRP) is on-going, with important new contributions already in the pipeline and further inputs being sought from all former UN staff and their spouses (whether members of BAFUNCS or not), with a view to strengthening this unique record of the contribution of British citizens and others to the UN. Click here for further information on the UNCRP.